After a long and tiring journey we finally arrived at Kansas City Missouri at about 7pm yesterday evening and finally checked into our hotel. After exploring the immediate surroundings around our hotel in gorgeous weather we found a little supermarket to buy dinner and settled down for the night. We woke early to register and set off for our first day at USITT. The Stage Expo floor opened at 11am and every one flooded through the doors and up the escalators. It was madness! Everyone rushed towards the stalls with free merchandise and with heavy bags of pens, flashlights and t-shirts we explored all the interesting gadgets and new technology that was available to us.
At 1.30 I tore myself away from the Stage Expo floor to attend a seminar session on “The Future of Theatre Minds in immersive Design; a conversation with 5D The Future of Immersive Design Conference”. This session was every bit as heavy as it sounds but an eye opening experience never the less. 5D is a philosophy, a way of thinking, of immersing yourself and the audience in a total narrative experience like no other. Its aims to create an alternate reality by using new technology in conjunction with old conventions. We have to be more in tune with the up and coming generations in order to progress in our art. Things change so fast and we need to keep up with the changes. It’s about interactivity and saying “Hay, I want to play”. In a nut shell it a about total design.
After this intense hour and a half, I came away with a contact and a possible job opportunity for the future. At this point I was already ready for bed and begrudgingly wondered into my next session on Automation 101. This was about moving scenery and the mechanics behind it. Very technical. Form this I took away that this technology was around to support the set and lighting designer as well as being able to run many things simultaneously.
Over all a very productive day and I’m looking forward to the rest of the week and the new interesting things I’m going to learn about. Tomorrow I hope to attend more sessions and explore the Stage Expo floor more.